Tank & the Bangas

Best Of 2017: Mauricio's List

Best Of 2017: Mauricio's List

In the world of DC live music, there was a lot to write about in 2017. I.M.P. made its broad presence even broader with the 6,000-capacity Anthem. Songbyrd solidified its niche in the up-and-coming R&B/hip-hop scene with clutch bookings like Xavier Omar, Jamila Woods, and Noname (and booked its first show at The Fillmore, with more co-bookings to come). Competition in the 200-500-capacity space increased with new venues like Union Stage, Pearl Street Warehouse, and The Miracle Theatre. Mount Pleasant DIY venue OTHERFEELS hosted its first DMV music showcase at 9:30 Club, with a second coming in late December. There really is no shortage of opportunities to catch live music in our nation's capital.

I covered 47 shows and one three-day festival for ChunkyGlasses this year, and it’s been a wild ride covering shows in venues big (Capital One Arena) and small (Dew Drop Inn). While most of there were a lot of great shows, the following ten best showcase why the live music experience is so essential. These artists convey emotion and energy in a way that can’t be contained within the confines of an album. With these shows, it was hard to walk away without the lingering feeling of ‘holy shit, they REALLY put their heart and soul into it tonight.’

So with that, here are my ten favorite shows of 2017. Click the headers to see more pics and a full recap of that show.

PS - And if you're still interested in knowing what my favorite songs from this year were, here's my Spotify playlist - Mauricio's Favorite Fifty of 'Seventeen!  


Lil Uzi Vert @ The Anthem - 12/15/2017

Lil Uzi Vert @ The Anthem - 12/15/2017

For the past two years, Lil Uzi Vert has stood out as one of rap's brightest stars. The ascension from Soundcloud sensation to self-proclaimed "rock star" has been fast-tracked, powered by multiple mixtapes, two top ten Billboard singles ("XO TOUR Llif3" and "Bad and Boujee"), and a #1 debut album in Luv Is Rage 2 released in late August. The Philadelphia native took advantage of his momentum this year by kicking off his holiday tour A Very Uzi Christmas with 6,000 fans in attendance for the Anthem's first hip-hop concert.


NPR Music's 10th Anniversary Party @ 9:30 Club - 12/2/2017

NPR Music's 10th Anniversary Party @ 9:30 Club - 12/2/2017

Yes, NPR Music is only ten years old. Although All Songs Considered is going on 18 years strong, the coalition of NPR member stations from across the country was founded in 2007 to centralize the regional tastemakers that bring us shows like World Cafe or Jazz Night in America. It's hard to overstate its cultural influence on music in that short time, most notably with the Tiny Desk Concert video series, where up-and-comers like Diane Coffee and established arena acts like Adele come to perform. In the spirit of the brevity-focused music series, seven bands and musicians took to the stage to play three or four songs each. The event quickly sold out the day it went on sale. But the plot twist? NPR kept the lineup a secret until the moment they came on stage. Of course, when you're NPR Music, it's not hard to ask the public to place your trust in them.


Tank & the Bangas @ Songbyrd - 7/21/2017

Tank & the Bangas @ Songbyrd - 7/21/2017

Tank & the Bangas have gone viral, and they have NPR to thank. Though the New Orleans band only has one album under their wings, the independently-released 2013 album Think Tank, a coveted spot in NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series catapulted them to Internet fame. As the winners of the 2017 Tiny Desk Contest, a nationwide talent search for the best band that hasn’t broken through yet, their Tiny Desk Concert has been viewed more than 1.5 million times and counting. DC was quick to snap up what precious few tickets were available once Songbyrd announced the band’s concert. And amongst all the hype surrounding the band, their stellar performance made them some new fans that have reason to be very excited about the band’s bright future.